The pictures above are buildings on the campus of FIU in Miami FL that Bernard Tschumi designed, my wifes’ best friend graduated from here. I am so envious of them both, Miami is such an architecturally intriguing place.

How one enters a building and moves through it constitutes the vectors. What keeps out the rain, cold, heat, noise, and burglars constitutes the envelope. Vectors activate; envelopes define.” (Bernard Tschumi in The State of Architecture at the Beginning of the 21st Century)

The brief definition above helps us get a grasp on two major concerns of form, vector and envelope. What many of us may not realize is that form for architecture is often times thought of and created in medical terms; architects mimic and learn from advancements in medicine – particularly studies of the structure of the human body.

As I’m writing my ethics paper on architecture this is one of the bigger questions I have; as Christians seeking to interpret our reality in light of the redemptive narrative of scripture what does our theological anthropology mean for how we conceive of architecture. Can we speak of a ‘Christian’ approach to envelopes? Can we speak of a ‘Christian’ approach to vectors? I have mixed feelings of raising this sort of question because it supposes a dichotomy between Christian architects and non-Christian architects which itself is based on another older dichotomy, the sacred – secular divide. Yet I think there is benefit in at least for a short time raising this question, do we as believers have a particular imageo dei that should inform our anthropology and therefore inform our approach to architecture?